Quick summary of this NPR interview: NPR hates the sequester, and brought in a spokeswoman from a local small airport to scaremonger about it by talking about the horrible, horrible loss of – thanks to the sequester – small airport air traffic controllers (ATCs). Small problem: lots of airports don’t actually use ATCs. In fact, the aforementioned spokeswoman’s own airport doesn’t have 24-hour coverage. And… most of that airport’s heavy traffic takes place outside of ATC-coverage hours. Seriously, that’s what she said:
I’d like to point out that we don’t have 24-hour tower coverage here currently. Those air traffic controllers are only directing traffic between 8 am to 8 pm seven days a week. And most of our heavy traffic is outside of those hours.
Matt Welch* (via Instapundit) had a lot of fun with this article generally, but I’d like to drill down on this one point, in order to ask a question: if heavy traffic is largely happening outside of existing coverage hours, why doesn’t the airport shift its ATC coverage hours? Is it because the heavy traffic will shift itself, in order to avoid the ATCs?…I don’t actually know the answer to that, but it would have been a great question for the NPR interviewer to ask. Better, at least, than what he actually did; which is to say, end the interview quick and try to find a new sequester scaremonger story. Tsk, tsk; see, this is why NPR is so dependent on government largesse…
*Link fixed. Sorry about that.